Hard Selling; Please Stop and Listen

Sales and Sales teams all have a job to do. Most companies would go out of business if not for their sales teams. There would be no marketing team, executive management or budget if the sales team is not selling their product and making revenue to pay for everyone’s PTO and benefits packages. As a consumer and someone who has worked alongside sales teams I completely understand the need for sales. That does not mean I agree with some of the tactics involved in selling.

There is no need for constant hard selling. I find that 90% of the time hard selling does not work. There are quite a few industries that seem to be most popular when it comes to jokes about hard selling. There are even clichés about sales people who act as if they are “Car Salesmen”. There are all kinds of clichés including phrases we have all been guilty of using in business across the board whether selling or trying to drive sales internally. That does not mean you hammer away at your consumer until they run screaming from the room or react negatively.

This is something I have been experiencing more often lately. It must be “that time of year”. I can understand what a telemarketer is going through; I use to work in a Contact Center myself. But when you call my house at dinner time and I give you the time to explain what it is you are calling about but end up saying very politely “thank you but I am not interested at this time”. Just say “okay have a good day”. That is not an opening to hammer away at me and try to force me into something I have already declined. This was not an “open door” to negotiate down to a more reasonable amount. It is very simply a “NO”.

The same experience took place at my gym. I am interested in working out with a trainer. I agreed the amount per session was “GREAT” but when I am rubbing my head and telling you as nicely as I can that I am not going to give you a credit card tonight then stop. If I explain I need to discuss the details further with other people and will get back to you as soon as the next day please accept the information I have given you. I did a work out that was intense and extremely tough after having been awake for over 14 hours, worked two jobs and drove 2.5 hours. Hard selling and hammering me while I slowly succumbed to a raging migraine is not going to convince me to continue my work outs with you and your company.

I understand Sales teams are not only responsible for helping customers/consumers get the most out of their product but also are also responsible keeping up their lively hood. I understand the premises of the whole sales process but not at the expense of a potential customer. A previous manager I had did not push our team towards numbers for sales sake she always told us we are servicing our customers. We are not looking at numbers while discussing our customer’s livelihood, we are helping them to get the service they need and can put to use to better their situation.

A successful sales team knows to treat each customer/consumer as the individual they are. When you feel the service and conversation is geared towards your needs and not the company pitching to you, you are more likely to see clearly whether this will in fact be a good purchase or not. Customers, consumers and other businesses want to know how a company or product will benefit them not how they will benefit your sales goals. Hard selling does not work if you forget you are talking to a living breathing person at the same time.

 

Related Articles:

http://www.inc.com/geoffrey-james/10-sales-cliches-to-avoid-like-the-plague.html

http://info.venderepartners.com/bid/48529/B2B-Sales-Humor-The-Top-100-Overused-Business-Clich%C3%A9s

http://www.forbes.com/sites/ericjackson/2012/06/19/89-business-cliches-that-will-get-any-mba-promoted-to-middle-management-and-make-them-totally-useless/

http://blogs.salesforce.com/company/2014/09/stop-pitching-and-start-selling-from-the-heart.html

http://heavyhittersales.typepad.com/heavy_hitter_sales_sales_/2010/04/favorite-sales-manager-sayings-and-clich%C3%A9s-.html

http://the-toast.net/2014/01/27/horrifying-business-cliches/

https://gigaom.com/2009/02/25/hard-selling-vs-soft-selling-which-approach-do-you-use-with-clients/

http://blogs.salesforce.com/company/2013/07/selling-service-not-sales.html

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